This is an ORIGINAL piece of fiction that I worked HOURS on. Do NOT steal it. I had better not find this on another site with names changed and such. It's rude and cruel. It's also called plagiarism! Enjoy the fiction, don't steal it.
A/N: I am utter failure when it comes to updating, which kind of makes me a hypocrite considering there's a lot of fiction sites I go on where I'm obsessed with certain stories and I turn into a raging Hulk when writers don't update for weeks at a time. So, I offer you all my sincerest apologies.
And many thanks to Infinite Legend for alerting me on my tardiness.
BTW, anyone see The Avengers? Was it NOT the BEST superhero movie you ever saw?
Chapter 13: Androgynous
Ryder Mancuso's POV
I might not be the smartest guy in the world but what most people never realized about me, is that my world was kept on a constant, consistent schedule. 4 o' clock in the morning I had 100 push-ups, 100 sit-ups, and spent half an hour on the phone with my Gran from Italy. After that, I take a shower, brush my teeth and go over my notes for the classes of the day. I go back to sleep for another four hours, and by 9 o clock I start my first class and have breakfast at the same time. During the day between classes, (including breaks) I'll meet up with my brothers or enjoy myself with some friendly company and go to the gym. (On occasion, friendly company can derail me of my agenda by a few minutes…) Every day is a different schedule, and the only people who know my schedule are my fraternity brothers and one or two pledges that are required to know so they don't fuck up when it comes to the pick-up days.
So those are little tidbits you should know.
It was disappointing to see Hector Arsenio in the gym with me. He might be a good friend of Eric and a hell of a pledge master but he was the biggest asshole when I was first recruited into Omega Theta Pi. Sure, all pledges were required to spend a few weeks of hell with the devil but Hector aka Swindle made every day a shit storm. Bitter memories were a hard pill to swallow.
"How the fuck you'd find me?" I said, pulling off my sweat-drenched wife beater and throwing it in the laundry basket.
Hector pulled off his OTP sweatshirt and grinned. "Fucking consistent schedule."
The drawbacks of having OCD and having your frat brothers know about it.
Putting on some deodorant and a fresh new t-shirt, I pressed my back against the lockers. "What do you want?" I threw the roll-on back in my gym bag on the floor.
He frowned. "What the fuck is up your ass, Skipper?"
Ignoring the god-damned awful nickname Kathy gave me and spread throughout the university like a wildfire, "Seriously. Since when the fuck do you go to the gym during lunch hour?"
Hector put his feet on the bench and started to tie up his shoelaces. "Eric told me to have a talk with you about your GPA. You're slipping my son."
I let my head fall back against the locker and groaned. As if having my professors constantly tell me I needed to focus, needed to better myself, wasn't enough I had to hear it from Hector and Eric. Fucking shit, I was dealing with it. I got a tutor; I already cleared my schedule for all possible study sessions I had to cram. Anger was boiling inside of me, and I literally felt my frustration pounding inside my skull trying to get me to ram my head against the tiled floors so I could think better.
Instead, I turned around and started to ram my fist into the nearest locker door. The loud clunking sound of metal against my fist made me feel more relaxed, but not by much.
"Better now?" said Hector with a lop-sided smile. No doubt enjoying the shit I was in.
If I couldn't be an OTP brother, then there was no point for anything. I'd be a god-damned loner; a guy without a crew, brothers, friends or back-up. I'd be just another fucking person. Who the hell wanted to be that? I wasn't meant for the ordinary, I was meant for something better. And a fucking GPA wasn't going to get in the way of that.
I started to crack my knuckles one by one, more a nervous gesture than me getting ready to beat Hector to the ground. "How much time do I have?"
Hector shrugged his big shoulders and sat down with a towel around his neck. "It's not about the time. Eric's gonna stall as much as he can with the Prez, he just needs to show that your improving. Turn up the C minus in English to a B plus."
A frosh walked in and paused to have a look at me.
Getting ready to tell him to fuck off, he saw the beaten locker beside me. He showed me his hands in a placating gesture and walked back in the same direction he came.
"English grades up, that's it?"
Hector took his cell phone out of his pocket when it started to beep and began to text. No doubt it had to be Redlee Greenvich. Hector wasn't the texting type, unless it was with Redlee.
"And math. You're averaging a D right now. You need to ace the next test and midterm otherwise your ass is done." Hector said, calm and unnerved. He put his phone away and picked up a stray basketball lying on the floor.
Letting my hand slide over my face, I measured the options of cheating.
Not exactly the best option considering that OTP was known for its no-cheating, no-plagiarizing, no-nonsense policy. 5 years ago most of the frats were shut down because campus security found a ring of cheaters who stole the answers for the midterms and final exams and passed it around to the members of their frats. Fortunately, OTP was not involved and therefore, untouchable. Odin Petterson, our last Alpha leader made sure none of that shit hit the frat, including Eric, our current leader.
Okay, I couldn't exactly cheat my way out of this…
"Yo." Hector threw his towel at me, dragging me out of a shit plan I was making in my head.
He nodded over to my bag and I realized my phone was vibrating. Fantastic, I was so out of it I didn't even realize someone was calling me. I answered the phone to an unknown number.
I practically roared. "Who the fuck is this?"
No one knew my number unless I already had them in my contacts.
I heard a completely feminine sigh. "It's me, your tutor."
Hector decided at that time to start dribbling the basketball against the floors.
"…and it's not gonna happen….maybe…..tomorrow.."
Taking away the basketball away from Hector with ease, I threw it in the laundry basket.
"I can't hear!" I said, the moment Hector picked up another stray basketball on the floor and looked ready to shoot it at me.
"Hold on a minute." I flipped the middle finger at Hector and mouthed a "fuck off." He grinned, and mouthed "pussy." He sauntered out of the locker room, impressed that I hadn't given him a good enough comeback.
Pressing the phone back against my ear, "What?"
I heard a rustling of paper in the background and some clatter. "I said the tutoring session is not going to happen tomorrow. So maybe it'd better if we do it the day after." I heard another crashing noise and my tutor mutter a few blue swears that would make a sailor proud.
I felt my nails digging into palms. Ready to dig my fist deeper into the damaged locker, "What do you mean it's not gonna happen tomorrow?" My jaw clenched hard enough that pain started to shoot through my molars.
"Because I have a paper due the day after tomorrow that I didn't know about. So I'm going to bear the consequences of not sleeping for the next 48 hours."
I kicked the damn locker with my sneakers to leave another dent. "YOUR CONSQ-" I took a few deep breaths to calm myself. It wouldn't be the smartest thing in the world if I ran my mouth off at my last remaining tutor.
"Crap. I'm on low battery. I'm sorry I can't make it but I'll see if I can find someone who can do something for you tomorrow, okay? Bye."
Before I could even get in a few words, she hung up on me.
I picked up my gym bag and went through everything to take out my wallet. I saved a print-out of my tutor's schedule in case of an emergency. Opening up my wallet, I unfolded the piece of paper and went through the classes she had today. I had History for the next class and I couldn't miss it.
"Brother Ryder! I'm here for the pick-up."
I jerked my head up to see one of the OTP pledges waiting for me.
"What time is it?" I asked, feeling my world suddenly shift into something brighter.
He reached for the phone in his pocket and told me, "Its 12:15."
I walked up to him smiling and braced my arms around his shoulders, friendly and innocent. "You have any classes today, pledge?"
Stunned for a few moments, "Uh, it's uh—I don't actually have any classes right now. I had them this morning."
I smiled hard enough, I thought for a brief second my cheeks would split. "After you drop me off I want you to check up on someone. Last name's Singh, has glasses, 5'4 or 5'5 I think. Has a shitty torn bag on her all the time."
"Uh—yeah sure." He stammered. "What's…what do you want me to do when I find her?"
I stepped a foot back from the pledge and took a good look at him. He wasn't too big or small but he was intimidating with the dark hair and the red highlights. He was tall enough to reach my height and his shoulders were big. If didn't act like such a bitch all the time, the pledge would've been considered my choice for the "Little Brother" frat program.
"I need you to go to the Adam's Wing in the Ritchsen's building. Class 1208 B. She'll be taking that class in an hour. You'll get there…before class starts." I said, my voice laced with much warning.
He nodded, his Adam's apple bobbing back and forth. "Yes, Brother Ryder."
"Also, try to get some other pledges to come along. I have something to tell her that you need to pass along."
My tutor was going to have to learn that I couldn't handle being left on the burner. I needed help and she was going to give it me. "No" wasn't an option anymore.
Shakespearean Literature was that one class that always managed to get me so irritable, I was turning into a menace around the friends I had. It was 1:00 p.m., and all I had for breakfast and lunch was a glass of water and a bag of Doritos. Bullshit classes had a way of taking away my appetite. I sat on the floor outside the lecture hall waiting for the class to begin. Some of the students were loitering around laughing, flirting, enjoying the nice cool breeze that was coming from the large bay windows all around.
Instead of joining them, I opened up my binder and re-read my draft paper on the tragic play "Coriolanus". I was a wreck with all this anxiety, small butterflies building up in my stomach for this paper.
"You have to stop reading at some point."
I noticed a few droplets of spit jump on to my paper. Wiping it off, I turned sideways and noticed Daniela sit beside me. Her braces wrapped around head and her short raven hair covered in tiny glittery clips. It would've been easy to see her and think of a skinny little 14 year old girl.
The braces in her mouth made it hard to understand what she was saying but after a year, she became more coherent.
I shook my head. "Can't, I got a damn C- for the last paper."
She blinked. "I thought your paper was better than mine and I got an A."
I bit my lip to keep my mouth from spilling the truth. Professor Landon hated me, loved her and everyone else.
Only you could be stupid enough to believe he had nothing against me.
If I actually said what I really wanted to say, Daniela would burst into tears and never talk to me again. She didn't know I had a mean streak, no one here did either. I was the study-holic. Ha!
"Yeah, but I worked on this paper with the Ms. Jeanne so hopefully he won't be the beast with many heads that butts me away." I laughed at my own little quip.
Daniela frowned, no doubt pondering about what I said that had me giggling.
"It's a quote from the play," I jabbed her softly with my elbow, "unless you really didn't read it and just used spark notes to bullshit."
Her grin slowly turned into an open-mouth spectacle.
I waved my hand in front of her face to no response. About to question her, I realized the hall had gotten quiet and everyone was looking directly at me.
Or behind me.
I turned around and found six very tall, very intimidating looking guys in fraternity wear gazing down at me from the floor.
Holy crap, what the hell did I do now?
"You Singh, the tutor?"
Son of a bitch.
"Why?" I asked the tall guy with the bright red highlights in his hair.
"You need to come with me."
At this point in time, I knew there was no way to run. I was fast but I wasn't that fast. There was no way I could out run six guys in a crowded hall. And there was no security guard in sight. Clutching onto my bag with my clammy hands, I got up and passed my paper to Daniela.
"Make sure the professor gets it on time."
She looked at me, worried and confused. I might've looked confident but I was felt my hands shake. The small amounts of butterflies in my stomach were now an army of millions. "Okay," I took in a deep breath, "where to?"
He gestured me towards the back entrance. I walked behind him well aware there were four guys behind me; the other was walking next to the guy with the red highlights. I only saw the side of his face, which looked eerily feminine. We reached the end of the hall, made our way downstairs and outside the building. It wasn't deserted, there was still a few students loitering around the smoking area and few just lying down on the grass enjoying the sun.
Now I was puzzled. Was whatever they were going to do with me, going to be public?
Ready to ask what was going to happen next, the group of guys walked away from me for a couple of meters and stopped. I scanned the area, wondering if this was a sign for me to run and never come back. There was plenty of room for me to scream and yell "STALKER! DANGER STRANGER!" But if they caught me, I'd be screwed and if security finally saw me, they'd ask what danger I was in. Truthfully, these guys hadn't harmed in any physical way…but was I going to take the chance of that?
I took a step back, only to see the guy with the red highlights, crossing his arms across his wide chest. Yep, it was a total dare. If I ran, he'd catch me in a matter of seconds.
He focused back on the group of guys. I noticed he was particularly engaged in conversation with one individual. His back was towards me, so I couldn't see his face but he seemed skinnier than the rest of the macho guys in khaki pants and polo shirts. His hair in disarray almost like a wig not washed for several weeks. He was shorter than all of them by at least two inches. Maybe he was androgynous? The guy with red highlights laughed and pushed the other guy playfully, no doubt laughing at my expense. Okay, I was dammed irritated at this point, ready to march up to the group, my legs stopped before I could actually attempt to walk in their direction. The guy who I couldn't see with the moppy hair, turned in my direction.
His eyes widened in shock. And I knew without a doubt my eyes did too. I could barely feel my bag drop to the floor or my jaw drop open. This guy wasn't a guy at all. It was my neighbor, Indiana Wyndell!
Sidenote: Since my lack of updates was real shitty of me, I'm posting another chapter…in less than 24 hours. I just need to edit some bits.
Don't worry, Indie's coming back.